A new view, or just more propaganda?

France24 logoNews today of another new global TV news channel coming our way soon… and this time, it’s the French. France24 is a joint venture between the country’s two main TV broadcasters: the private TF1, and the public France Televisions. Launch is due before the end of 2006, and will include two channels – one entirely in French, the other 75% in English (with plans for an Arabic element from next summer). It will be available as a free channel, via both digital TV networks and broadband.
It’s interesting to see the number of references to CNN, Fox News, the BBC and Al Jazeera in its press-pack. Also on your Sky Digital EPG, you’ll find the Chinese CCTV, the German Deutsche Welle, and so on. The BBC has announced plans for an Iranian-targeted channel as well as an Arabic channel. At some point, one assumes the English-language Al Jazeera will finally launch.
There are an awful lot of broadcasters out there, trading quite happily on their ties to the motherland, but pleading that ‘no, we’re actually fair and balanced.‘ (OK, possibly not CCTV, but you get my point.) But in a world of media plurality, where there are countless sources out there, all basically covering the same stuff, maybe that’s not a problem. Choose the one you personally trust, and nail your colours to their mast. That’s how Fox became America’s no1. Why shouldn’t it work globally?
Regardless, it’ll be great to have a proper French-language news channel out there. (Euronews doesn’t count.) Access to French TV whilst on my ‘year out’ was the single biggest contributor to my fluency in French.
PS: I hope people don’t mind the prevalence of pictures on recent posts; I’m experimenting with WordPress’s image functionality.